Four NCI Cancer Centers Announce Landmark Research Consortium and Collaborations with Celgene

The Abramson Cancer Center at the University of Pennsylvania, The Herbert Irving Comprehensive Cancer Center at Columbia University Medical Center, the Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center at Johns Hopkins, and The Tisch Cancer Institute at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai announced the establishment of a research consortium focused on accelerating the discovery and development of novel cancer therapeutics and diagnostics for the benefit of patients.

The consortium aligns four major academic institutions in a unified partnership with the shared goal of creating high-impact research programs to discover new treatments for cancer. The magnitude of the multi-institutional consortium and agreements between Celgene Corporation (NASDAQ: CELG) and each institution will support the rapid delivery of disease-altering programs to the clinic that may ultimately benefit cancer patients, global healthcare systems and society.
Subsequent to establishing the consortium, Celgene entered into four public-private collaboration agreements in which it paid a total of $50 million, $12.5 million to each institution, for the option to enter into future agreements to develop and commercialize novel cancer therapeutics arising from the consortium’s efforts. Over the next ten years the institutions intend to present multiple high-impact research programs to Celgene with the goal of developing new life-saving therapeutics. Subject to Celgene’s decision to opt-in and license the resulting technologies, each program has the potential to be valued at hundreds of millions of dollars.
The four cancer center directors, Steven Burakoff, M.D., of the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, Stephen G. Emerson, M.D., Ph.D., of Columbia University, William Nelson, M.D., Ph.D., of Johns Hopkins University and Chi Van Dang, M.D., Ph.D., of the University of Pennsylvania, said in a shared statement, “The active and coordinated engagement, creative thinking and unique perspectives and expertise of each institution have made this collaboration a reality. Our shared vision and unified approach to biomedical research, discovery and development, combined with Celgene’s vast research, development and global commercial expertise, will enable us to accelerate the development and delivery of next-generation cancer therapies to patients worldwide.”

In addition to the benefits of long-standing professional relationships among the four cancer center directors, the depth and breadth of the institutions’ combined research and clinical infrastructures provide an exceptional foundation upon which to build this transformative collaboration. The four institutions collectively care for more than 30,000 new cancer patients each year, and have nearly 800 faculty members who are active in basic and clinical research, and clinical care.

“This is a paradigm-shifting collaboration that further strengthens our innovative ecosystem,” said Bob Hugin, Executive Chairman of Celgene Corporation. “We remain firmly committed to driving critical advances in cancer and believe the tremendous expertise of our collaboration partner institutions will be invaluable in identifying new therapies for cancer patients.”
The four consortium members are among the 69 institutions designated as Cancer Centers by the National Cancer Institute (NCI). These 69 institutions serve as the backbone of NCI’s research in the war against cancer.
The Cancer Trust, a non-profit organization, brought together the four institutions, thereby establishing the multi-institutional research consortium. T.R. Winston & Company, LLC served as the strategic advisor to The Cancer Trust and facilitated negotiations among The Cancer Trust, the institutions and Celgene. The commercialization offices of the four institutions, Columbia Technology Ventures, Johns Hopkins Technology Ventures, Mount Sinai Innovation Partners and the Penn Center for Innovation, subsequently collaborated with Celgene to accelerate this effort to discover and develop new therapies for the treatment of cancer.

“We are extremely proud of what we’ve collectively accomplished through establishing this collaboration and aligning all participants,” said Erik Lium, Ph.D., Senior Vice President of Mount Sinai Innovation Partners. “We look forward to continuing to work closely with one another, our colleagues in research and clinical care, and now with Celgene to advance the discovery of new therapies that will dramatically improve the lives of patients worldwide.”

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